Saturday, October 11, 2014

Book of Mormon

Bonjour!                                                                                                                           10/11/2014

Things have been pretty good this past week. Unfortunately I lost my planner, which is where I have everything I did this past week, and also the stuff I was going to write home, so I was a little frustrated about that, but its all good. Things are going good here though, and this past week has been super hot. We weren’t able to get a ton done last Monday, as we had our meeting with President which was good, where we talked a lot about the obedience of the mission, and also how we can get the missionaries to stop taking moto’s. Afterwards we had to go do a transfer of a few missionaries as well, as there were a couple who went home this week.
Things are good with the work also though. We had some really good lessons as well with Abel who is the husband of Rebecca as they’re waiting on their marriage. All the children are baptized, but the parent’s can't until that marriage we are waiting on, the mother has the strongest testimony ever but the father hardly has any. The problem is it almost seems like he doesn’t want to, so it’s hard to help someone become converted if they don’t want to. But things went well this week with him. For the past while we’ve been struggling with him, as he doesn’t really like talking to us, but last Monday we got a call from his wife saying he got in a pretty bad moto accident. The first thing that came to mine and my companions minds were what a opportunity this was for us, it kind of reminded me of Alma 32, where he was able to go finally preach the gospel to the people as they were more open to it after being humbled by their afflictions. Anyways, when we got to see him, his foot was injured pretty bad. I thought about going in with my awesome medical skills to help, as none of them really knew what they were doing, then got scared as it was pretty gross, so I just did what I could. Ha-ha, but it was good, as he was talking to us saying that really from what happened, he should be dead, which got him thinking a lot, and he was thinking about what would have happened if he died. That helped us get into teaching the Plan of Salvation in seeing that this life is when we are supposed to prepare to meet God. He understood that well, and could see that he was lucky to have this chance again. Now he’s at the point of seeing what he can do in preparing for what’s next, but there is still a little ways to go, but things are going much better there. With the family this past week we saw a lot we could work on as well. They are very solid with their FHE, with their family prayers and spend a lot of time together as well, yet they weren’t as happy as they could be and were still having a lot of problems. I had the thought to wonder how their Book of Mormon reading was going. When we looked into it we saw that they hardly read as a family, if at all. So we’ve been putting in a lot of focus in that area, and it’s kind of shown us the necessity of reading as a family each day, and keeping that in the center. As the Book of Mormon is kind of a guide, when people aren't reading it daily, they are missing out on many blessings, which could be their's. I remember Elder Bednar talking about the importance of it, and in keeping that as a habit. He talked about how they always strived to do it, even when their kids weren’t completely focused, and didn’t want to do it, and he said that he can't remember just one experience in particular that was an incredible spiritual experience, but rather all of them put together were what gave the great results. He compared it to a painting of a wheat field in that if you look close and see just one brush stroke, its not that amazing, but when you step back and look at it all it makes an amazing picture. I remember it as the same way, as when we were younger I was often tired or distracted and sometimes wasn't always down for reading the Book of Mormon, but looking back now, I can see what a blessing that was that we made the effort.
This past week has been pretty good. I was super happy as I was able to download some of the General Conference talks, and they were incredible! I loved the whole new thing where they can speak in the native language now. Unfortunately there is only one General Authority that is French at the moment. Ha-ha, but the talk that really hit me was the one by Elder Robbins about which way we face, in do we fear god or man more. Its a very common problem, that he showed even many prominent people in the scriptures have had, and something I’ve had a problem with as well, but he talked about the real importance of it, and showed the example of Jesus, in always being more perfectly obedient to his father rather than man, even if he would be persecuted so much for it. I loved all the talks as well on the importance of strengthening our testimonies. And also Elder Bednar's, where he talked about why we preach the gospel, and the story he told about his sons, when the one got treated by his brother, he went out and did the same for his friends, which is something I’ve seen a ton here where when people really feel the blessings of the gospel, they want everyone to hear about it. But yeah it was really nice to get to hear some of the talks, so I’m excited for the rest of them. So things are going pretty well here, again I lost my planner so a lot of stuff was left behind, but hopefully I’ll find that soon. Thanks for all the love and support!
                                                                          Elder Oliverson

They told us some pretty interesting stuff about Ghanvie my second time around. As you know its the city in the middle of the lake built on the water to get away from slave traders. But its all on water, and they get around by boats, they call it the Venice of Africa, even though its nothing like Venice. They say the kids learn to swim when they are between 3 and 4 years old, as they really don't have a choice. Also they made a little island, so there is a 20 by 20 square of land, where they teach the kids to walk, as its the only solid flat ground. You can tell someone is from the city as they have a wierd form of walking because they dont have any land to walk on.

A little aids clinic.

Elder Mejean's depart back to France this week.

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